Friday, February 1, 2008

The circle skirt disaster.

This is an utter disaster.

I feel badly writing this, because I realize that thus far in my brief two week stint as a blogger, the majority of my posts have been about the disasters and mistakes that arise out of my creative pursuits - first there was the burned sugar, then an overabundance of cubed bread, then too big scrub pants and skirts, and now I am writing to tell you how I royally botched a circle skirt project that I was very excited about.

I recently purchased a vintage round tablecloth on eBay with an idea to turn it into a circle skirt. It seems so simple. Buy a circular piece of fabric, cut a circle the size of your waist in the center, add a drawstring, and there you have a one-of-a-kind piece of clothing. I found instructions for the skirt on the internet and got to measuring and snipping last night. Unfortunately I measured wrong.

I know the old adage "Measure twice, cut once," and the thing is, I measured twice. I swear I did. It is just that I measured incorrectly twice. I could have measured 1,000 times and still cut that giant hole, because my brain was confused. First, I am embarrassed that admit that basic algebra got the best of me. All I really had to do was the simple Circumference = 2 * 3.14 *radius equation. I knew the circumference of my waist (I won't share, because it is too large for public knowledge. If you want to know you are going to have to do the math.), so I modified the equation to Circumference/6.28 and it gave me a radius of 7.165 inches. I measured my arc, double checked, and cut the hole.

What a mistake. When I excitedly unfolded the cloth to see the waist, I instead saw a gaping, gigantic, awful hole. It reminded me of a hula-hoop, big enough to loop around my waist twice. I actually sat down and cried. And I don't mean sniffled, I actually cried big, rolling tears of frustration at the fact that I ruined the skirt, that I didn't know how to do math, and most importantly I cried because I was so excited for this project and managed to botch it before I even got to the sewing part. It is a very disappointing feeling to realize you are not an expert crafter.

However, having 19 hours to gain perspective, I now am looking at the bright side. This trial and error experience reinforced an important lesson - it is vital to cut a muslin template before cutting one-of-a-kind fabric, even if the extra step feels like an awful task.

My new mantra "Sewing is not an immediate gratification endeavor. Quality sewing involves lots of steps. Sewing is not an immediate gratification endeavor. Quality sewing involves lots of steps."